Disclaimer: I don’t have any stock or put any stock in the NYT corporation.
But I do predict that advertizers, who have already been abandoning the NYT, will speed up their departure, leaving the NYT in an impossible position.
This isn’t just about constant losses of what seems to be a foreseeably bankrupt and already beleaguered NYT, nor is this about the scandal involving in some way the new director of the New York Times (a story covered by Bill Donohue at the Catholic League), but about something else altogether, at least seemingly. I’m betting that advertizers are going to run fast because of what’s coming on Wednesday.
But before we get to that on Wednesday, let’s just take a snippet from an article of the NYT about itself: here.
October 25, 2012, 8:42 am
New York Times Company Posts a Profit but Advertising Falls, Lowering RevenueBy CHRISTINE HAUGHNEY
Updated | 9:20 p.m. The share price for The New York Times Company stock tumbled nearly 22 percent on Thursday after posting lower-than-expected earnings.
The company reported third-quarter net income of $2.28 million on Thursday, a decline of more than 85 percent from the period a year earlier, when the company posted a large gain on the sale of investments and took a charge for paying down its debt ahead of schedule.
The net income is equal to about 2 cents a share, compared with net income of $15.7 million, or 10 cents a share, in the third quarter of 2011. Analysts had forecast income of 8 cents a share. Total revenue declined 0.6 percent, to $449 million, dragged down by continuing weakness in advertising revenue, which fell 8.9 percent, to $182.6 million, from $200.5 million.
Print advertising at the company’s newspapers, which include The New York Times, The Boston Globe and The International Herald Tribune, shrank 10.9 percent, and digital advertising across the company fell 2.2 percent.
Shares closed at $8.31, down $2.34 for the day.
Douglas Arthur, an equity analyst at Evercore Partners, an investment bank that follows The Times and has a buy on the stock, said the company performed far worse than its competitors in advertising sales. Gannett, for example, recently reported a 6.6 percent decline in publishing-related ad revenues for the third quarter.
“It was an absolute awful quarter for The New York Times; there were no ifs, ands or buts,” Mr. Arthur said. “The print being down 11 percent is a head-scratcher. We’re not seeing those kinds of drops at other companies. In fact, some companies are seeing a pickup. The Times is an outlier.”
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My comment: There’s a Pulitzer-worthy piece (not written by me) that has already gone to press, and which will appear on 28 November 2012 (but not in the NYT, so stay tuned). Mark your calendars. Actually, never mind. You’ll hear about it, though probably not from the NYT, the Boston Globe, The International Herald Tribune, and any other subsidiaries of the NYT, at least not for a day or two. And then you’ll probably see an extremely adept defense and rationalization, which has already been tried in the past. But we’ll be anyalyzing their spin. There will be a lot of that. But spin with this kind of thing just won’t work anymore. I’m just guessing, but I think the Wall Street Journal and FoxNews will be interested in this story within a week or two. And then it will go from there. Sorry, but I’m under embargo until 28 November as to what this is all about.